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The University of Texas at Arlington
Graduate Catalog 2002-2004


Department of Biology

www.uta.edu/biology
Admission | Degree Requirements | Courses

Areas of Study and Degrees

Biology

M.S.

Quantitative Biology

Ph.D.

Mathematical Sciences

Ph.D.

(See Interdepartmental and Intercampus Programs.)

Master's Degree Plans

Thesis and Non-Thesis

Chair

John D. Bacon
337 Life Science, 817-272-2871

Graduate Advisor

Daniel Formanowicz
349 Life Science, 817-272-2422

Graduate Faculty

Professors

Arnott, Bacon, Campbell,
Chrzanowski, Formanowicz,
Frye, Hellier,
McMahon, Neill, Robinson, Smatresk

Associate Professors

Bernard, Grover

Assistant Professors

Burleson, Chippindale,
Marshall, McAllister, Passy
Smith, van Waasbergen,
Wilk-Blaszczak

Professor Emeritus

Pyburn

Objective

The program leading to the degree of Master of Science in biology is designated to provide graduate education which will prepare students for vocations in industry, government, and teaching, and to pursue further graduate education leading to the doctorate. The doctoral program is designed to train students to apply sophisticated quantitative techniques to solving basic and applied problems in biology. Students in this program will attain substantially greater quantitative skills than in traditional doctoral programs in the biological sciences, providing them with a competitive advantage in business, industry, government, and academia.

Admission

Master of Science

Admission status in the Master of Science program is determined as follows:

Unconditional Admission

Decisions are based on consideration of all the information listed below and are not based on any single criterion alone.

1. A Bachelor's degree in Biology or a Bachelor's degree in some other discipline with at least 12 hours of advanced level coursework (junior or senior level courses) in Biology.

2. A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, as calculated by the Graduate School. Applicants overall GPA in the Sciences and within Biology are also considered.

3. An acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination, generally a combined score of 1000 or higher on the Verbal plus Quantitative sections.

4. Favorable letters of recommendation from at least three individuals able to assess the applicant's potential for success in graduate school.

5. Evidence of previous research experience may also be considered.

6. If a student has a combined verbal and quantitative GRE score of less than 1000, they may be considered for unconditional admission if further review of their undergraduate transcript, recommendation letters, correspondence or direct interactions with Biology faculty, and statement of professional research interests indicates that they are qualified to enter the Masters Program.

7. International students whose native language is not English must provide a score on the Test of Spoken English (TSE) of at least 45.

Denial of Admission

A candidate may be denied admission if they have less than satisfactory performance on a majority of the admission criteria listed above.

Probationary Admission

If an applicant does not meet a majority of standards for unconditional admission outlined above, they may be considered for probationary admission after careful examination of their application materials. Probationary admission requires that the applicant receive a B or better in their first 12 hours of graduate coursework at UTA.

Deferred and Provisional Admission

A deferred application decision may be granted when a file is incomplete or when a denied decision is not appropriate. An applicant unable to supply all required documentation prior to the admission deadline but who otherwise appears to meet admission requirements may be granted provisional admission.

Fellowships and Scholarships

Students that are unconditionally admitted will be eligible for available scholarship and/or fellowship support. Award of scholarships or fellowships will be based on consideration of the same criteria utilized in admission decisions. To be eligible, candidates must be new students coming to UTA in the Fall semester, must have a GPA of 3.0 in their last 60 undergraduate credit hours plus any graduate credit hours as calculated by the Graduate School, and must be enrolled in a minimum of 6 hours of coursework in both long semesters to retain their fellowships.

Doctor of Philosophy

Admission status in the doctoral program is determined as follows:

Unconditional Admission

Decisions are based on consideration of all the information listed below and are not based on any single criterion alone.

1. A master's degree in Biology or at least 30 hours of graduate level coursework in Biology.

2. A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, as calculated by the Graduate School. If an Applicant has a Master's degree, the GPA from their Bachelor's degree, as calculated by the Graduate School, will also be considered. If they have 30 hours of graduate coursework but no degree, the GPA from that 30 hours, as calculated by the Graduate School, will also be considered.

3. An acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination, generally a combined score of 100 or higher on the Verbal plus Quantitative sections combined and/or 1200 or higher on the Quantitative plus Analytical sections.

4. Favorable letters of recommendation from at least three individuals able to assess the applicant's potential for success in a doctoral program in quantitative biology.

5. Evidence of previous research experience including publications resulting from previous graduate work may also be considered.

6. If a student has a combined verbal and quantitative GRE score of less than 1000, they may be considered for unconditional admission if further review of their undergraduate transcript, recommendation letters, correspondence or direct interactions with Biology faculty, and statement of professional or research interests indicates that they are qualified to enter the Doctoral Program.

7. International students whose native language is not English must provide a score on the Test of Spoken English (TSE) of at least 45.

Denial of Admission

A candidate may be denied admission if they have less than satisfactory performance on a majority of the admission criteria listed above.

Probationary Admission

The Department of Biology does not as a matter of course admit doctoral students on a probationary basis. Under exceptional circumstances, an applicant that does not meet the standards for unconditional admission outlined above, may be considered for

Degree Requirements

Supporting work outside the student's major area may be taken in botany, chemistry, geology, mathematics, microbiology, physics, and zoology. Approved courses in city and regional planning, civil engineering, environmental science and engineering, philosophy, psychology, and sociology may also be taken in support of the student's program. Subject to written approval by the Graduate Advisor and within the limitations stated in the General Graduate School Regulations, a student may take up to nine hours of coursework from among courses listed under Biology at the 3000 or 4000 levels.

Master of Science

Non-thesis and thesis options are offered. The non-thesis option is designed to meet the needs of practicing teachers or those intending to enter the teaching profession. Students enrolled in the non-thesis option are required to complete 36 hours, including 24 hours of formal coursework in biology plus two hours of 5101, 5391, and sufficient additional hours to complete course requirements. Students enrolled in the thesis option are required to complete 30 hours, including 18 hours of formal coursework, two hours of 5101, 5698, and sufficient additional hours to complete degree requirements.

Doctor of Philosophy

The degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Quantitative Biology requires distinguished attainment both in scholarship and in research. In addition to meeting the minimum requirements of a planned course of study, the ultimate basis for conferring the degree must be the demonstrated ability to do independent and creative work and the exhibition of a profound grasp of the subject matter within the field.

Foreign Language: Students will be required to demonstrate proficiency in one foreign language or in computer skills above that required for entry into the program.

Course Requirements: A total of 60 hours of coursework should normally be completed including 18 hours of required courses, 12 hours of electives, and 30 hours of seminar and research courses. All students in the program are required to take BIOL 5314 (Biometry), BIOL 5361 (Advanced Biometry), and BIOL 5362 (Experimental Design and Analysis). Students must take nine hours from among the following courses in quantitative biology: BIOL 5306 (Bioenergetics), BIOL 5316 (Advanced Evolutionary Biology), BIOL 5337 (Behavioral Ecology), BIOL 5365 (Image Analysis), BIOL 5333 (Biological Modeling), BIOL 5363 (Quantitative Approaches to Physiology), BIOL 5367 (Theoretical Systematics), BIOL 5305 (Techniques in Microbial and Molecular Genetics), BIOL 5312 (Advanced Genetics), or BIOL 5364 (Population Genetics). Twelve hours of electives may be selected by students under supervision of their dissertation committee from among courses listed below in the department's course offerings. Finally, 30 hours of seminars and research, including 9 hours of dissertation in the final semester (BIOL 6999), are required from among the following courses: BIOL 5101, 5200, 5291, 5391, 5193-5693, 5398, 5698, or 5998, or BIOL 6191, 6291, 6391, 6491, 6591, or 6691 (can be repeated for credit).

Animal Behavior Option: Study in the area of animal behavior is offered jointly by biology and psychology graduate programs. See Psychology section of the catalog.

The grade of R (research in progress) is a permanent grade; it cannot be changed by completing course requirements in a later semester. To receive credit for an R-graded course, the student must continue to enroll in the course until a passing grade is received.

An incomplete grade (the grade of X) cannot be given in a course that is graded R, nor can the grade of R be given in a course that is graded X. To receive credit for a course in which the student earned an X, the student must complete the course requirements. A grade of X cannot be changed by enrolling again in the course in which an X was earned. At the discretion of the instructor, a final grade can be assigned through a change of grade form.

Three-hour thesis courses and three- and six-hour dissertation courses are graded R/F/W only (except social work thesis courses). The grade of P (required for degree completion for students enrolled in thesis or dissertation programs) can be earned only in six- or nine-hour thesis courses and nine-hour dissertation courses. In the course listings below, R-graded courses are designated either"Graded P/F/R" or "Graded R." Occasionally, the valid grades for a course change. Students should consult the appropriate Graduate Advisor or instructor for valid grade information for particular courses. (See also the sections titled "R" Grade, Credit for Research, Internship, Thesis or Dissertation Courses and Incomplete Grade in this catalog.)

Biology (BIOL)

Course fee information is published in the online Student Schedule of Classes at www.uta.edu/schedule. Please refer to this Web site for a detailed listing of specific course fees.

5101. SPECIAL TOPICS IN BIOLOGY (1-0). Seminar on significant biological research. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5102. PRESENTATION METHODS (1-0). Introduction on preparation of scientific talks and poster presentations, including graphics, biological illustration, banner making, preparation of graphics slides and scientific photography.

5103. COMPUTER APPLICATIONS (1-0). An introduction to the software applications needed to collect and analyze data, prepare scientific papers and present research findings. Both Macintosh and PC platform applications will be reviewed.

5104. GRANT PROPOSAL WRITING (1-0). Methods of preparation of research proposals to granting agencies, including: use of library research
facilities; standard proposal formats; elements of successful proposals; survey of funding agencies in the biological sciences.

5105. RESEARCH SEMINAR I (1-0). Once during a student's first semester for attending a seminar series of talks by Biology Department faculty and graduate students.

5106. RESEARCH SEMINAR II (1-0). For attending a seminar series of talks by Biology Department faculty and graduate students. Students enrolling in Research Seminar II will be required to present a seminar on the results of their graduate research.

5302. MICROBIAL GENETICS (3-0). Consideration of the nature, expression and regulation of the genetic processes in micro-organisms. Prerequisites: BIOL 2451 and 3315 or consent of the instructor.

5303. MOLECULAR GENETICS (3-0). Study of molecular genetics with emphasis on eucaryotic systems including DNA structure and chromosome arrangement: molecular evolution, and gene regulation and expression. Prerequisites: BIOL 3315 or consent of the instructor.

5304. VIROLOGY (3-0). The nature, reproduction and host-cell interactions of viruses and animals. Emphasizes molecular aspects of viral replication and the molecular basis of pathogenesis. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5305. TECHNIQUES IN MICROBIAL AND MOLECULAR GENETICS (1-5). Laboratory based techniques course focusing on current methods in microbial and molecular genetics. Prerequisites: BIOL 4302 or equivalent and consent of the instructor.

5306. BIOENERGETICS (3-0). The use of quantitative analysis of energy resource partitioning to study the evolution of adaptational strategy at the cellular, individual and population levels, including quantitative analysis of physiological processes and life history adaptations in terms of energetic efficiency. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5309. HISTORY OF BIOLOGY (3-0). Trends of thought in the biological sciences with emphasis on notable contributors. Philosophical systems dealing with biological concepts in western civilization are stressed. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5310. SELECTED TOPICS IN BIOLOGY (3-0). Topics may vary depending on the needs and interests of the students. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: consent of the student's thesis committee and the current course instructor.

5311. EVOLUTION (3-0). Study of the origin of living systems and the mechanism of their evolution. Prerequisite: BIOL 3315 or equivalent or consent of the instructor.

5312. ADVANCED GENETICS (3-0). Mechanisms of transmission and function of genetic material. Covers fundamental concepts in transmission genetics including: genotype/phenotype relationships; inheritance; linkage; genome organization; and gene expression. Experimental and quantitative approaches to genetic analyses are emphasized. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5313. IMMUNITY TO PARASITES (3-0). Immune responses of invertebrates and vertebrates to protozoan and metazoan parasites. Emphasis on mechanisms by which parasites modify immunological responsiveness of hosts. Prerequisite: BIOL 3312 or consent of the instructor.

5314. BIOMETRY (3-0). An examination of statistical methods and procedures in relation to the design of biological experiments and the analysis of their results. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5315. COMMUNITY ECOLOGY (3-0). An investigation of the effects of interspecific interactions on the distribution and abundance of organisms. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5316. ADVANCED EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY (3-0). An analysis of existing biological phenomena with regard to their selective advantage in biological systems. Prerequisite: BIOL 5311 or consent of the instructor.

5320. BIOGEOGRAPHY (3-0). The role of natural and artificial transport, population pressure and limiting agencies are examined in the light of the patterns of distribution of living organisms. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5333. BIOLOGICAL MODELING (3-0). Representation of biological processes with linear and nonlinear differential and difference equations, using examples from physiology, population biology, and ecology. Topics include graphical analysis, simulation, stochastic processes, chaos, and fractals. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5337. BEHAVIORAL ECOLOGY (3-0). Introduction to predictive modeling techniques used in studying behavior and ecology of animals. Includes optimization, dynamic optimization, utility theory, and game theory. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5338. ENDOCRINOLOGY (3-0). An exploration of the vertebrate endocrine system with emphasis on cellular origin of hormones, hormone roles in physiological regulation and hormonal mechanisms of cellular action. Prerequisites: Biology 3301 or 3442 or consent of the instructor.

5339. ENVIRONMENTAL PHYSIOLOGY (3-0). Survey of the physiological adaptations of animals to their environments. Emphasizes physiological mechanisms and evolutionary changes that allow animals to survive under and respond to a variety of environmental conditions. Prerequisite: BIOL 3442 or equivalent or consent of the instructor.

5341. PRINCIPLES OF NEUROSCIENCE (3-0). Organization and function of the mammalian nervous system including: sensory functions, motor activity, regulation of autonomic function, memory and association. Prerequisites: three hours of advanced physiology courses or consent of the instructor.

5342. ICHTHYOLOGY (2-3). Classification, anatomy, physiology and natural history of fishes. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5343. REPTILE BIOLOGY (2-3). Diversity, systematics, distribution and behavior of major groups of reptiles. Laboratory includes museum techniques, identification and anatomical study. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5344. AMPHIBIAN BIOLOGY (2-3). Diversity, systematics and behavior of major groups of amphibians. Laboratory includes museum techniques, identification and anatomical study. Prerequisites: consent of the instructor.

5345. ORNITHOLOGY (2-3). Anatomy, physiology, identification, population dynamics and ethology of birds. Laboratory includes field identification, preparation of specimens, and field study techniques. A weekend field trip is required. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5348. ENVIRONMENTAL BIOLOGY (2-3). Examines major environmental problems that affect biological systems with an emphasis on problem solving. Includes a survey of potential employment opportunities for biologists in environmentally related fields. A weekend field trip is required. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5350. CONSERVATION BIOLOGY (3-0). Theory and practice of conservation biology, with emphasis on applications of modern quantitative and molecular genetic techniques to preservation of organisms and habitats. Includes: identification and prioritization of units for protection; conservation genetics; preserve design; public policy; and current case studies. Prerequisites: BIOL 3315 or equivalent or consent of the instructor.

5351. ENVIRONMENTAL MICROBIOLOGY (3-0). Principles, methodology, and practical applications of environmental microbiology. Topics include: habitat and community approaches to environmental microbiology; measures of microbial populations and activities; interactions among microbial communities; role of microorganisms in the origin of mineral resources and pollution and energy flow through microbial communities. Prerequisite: BIOL 3444 or equivalent or consent of the instructor.

5353. SCANNING ELECTRON MICROSCOPY (1-4). Principles and operation of the Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM). Training in the use of the JEOL JSM SEM. Specimen preparation for SEM included in the lectures and laboratory. Open to non-biologists. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5354. LIMNOLOGY (3-0). The study of biotic and abiotic components of inland waters. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5355. AQUATIC BIOLOGY (2-3). Ecological relationships of organisms in freshwater and marine ecosystems. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5361. ADVANCED BIOMETRY (3-0). Introduction to various computerized statistical application packages. Topics include multiple regression analysis, path analysis, partial correlation, residual analysis, and various techniques useful for data analysis. Prerequisite: BIOL 5314 or consent of the instructor.

5362. EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN (3-0). Various analysis of variance models will be explored including hierarchic models, multiway factorial models, Latin square designs, split plots designs, and incomplete block designs. Nonparametric methodologies and analysis of covariance techniques will also be presented. Prerequisite: BIOL 5314 or consent of the instructor.

5363. QUANTITATIVE APPROACHES TO PHYSIOLOGY (2-3). Advanced methodologies for the analysis of physiological systems. Quantitative aspects of transport, respiration, electrophysiology, and cardiovascular physiology. Laboratory will emphasize practical measurement methodologies and principles of physiological measurement and instrumentation. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5364. POPULATION GENETICS (3-0). The genetics of evolution with emphasis on measuring, predicting, and modeling genetic change in populations. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5365. IMAGE ANALYSIS (2-3). Quantitative methods used in the analysis of microscopical and other types of biological images. Images studied will be obtained from light and electron micrographs, energy dispersive electron analysis maps and normal, aerial, and laboratory photography. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5367. THEORETICAL SYSTEMATICS (3-0). Introduction to the study of organismal diversity and evolutionary relationships. Emphasizes quantitative methods for phylogeny reconstruction, and interpretation and application of molecular data. Prerequisites: BIOL 3315 and BIOL 3339 or equivalents, or consent of the instructor.

5291, 5391. INDIVIDUAL PROBLEMS IN BIOLOGY. Individual research projects supervised by a faculty member. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5410. BIOLOGICAL TECHNIQUES (1-4). Students will study the basic laboratory and field research techniques utilized in a wide variety of biological research areas. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5420. BIOLOGY ROTATIONS (1-4). Students study biological research techniques in detail in the laboratories of three different Biology Department faculty members. Faculty laboratories involved will vary each time that it is offered. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5442. EXPERIMENTAL ANIMAL PHYSIOLOGY (3-3). An integrative study of physiological mechanisms at molecular, cellular, tissue, organ and organismal levels. Focuses on nervous system and neuronal regulation of major physiological systems (i.e., cardiovascular, ventilatory, muscular) and responses to environmental variables. Laboratory complements lecture, stressing physiological techniques and experimental design, computer data acquisition, and data analysis and presentation. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor.

5449. PARASITOLOGY (3-3). Lecture deals with ecology of parasites, morphologic and physiologic adaptations to a parasitic way of life, host adaptations to parasitism, and effects of parasites on hosts. Laboratory deals with clinical and veterinary parasitology, animal dissections, diagnosis of parasitic infections, and identification of parasites. Prerequisite: 16 hours of laboratory biology or consent of the instructor.

5193-5693. RESEARCH IN BIOLOGY. Conference course in which the student undertakes intensive investigation of topics under the supervision of a staff member. Prerequisite: consent of the instructor. Graded P/F/R.

5398, 5698, 5998. THESIS. 5398 graded R/F only; 5698 and 5998 graded P/F/R. Prerequisite: consent of faculty.

6191-6691. ADVANCED RESEARCH. Faculty supervised individual research. May be repeated for credit. Graded P/F/R.

6399-6999. DISSERTATION. 6399 and 6699 graded R/F only; 6999 graded P/F/R. Prerequisite: admission to candidacy for the degree Doctor of Philosophy in Quantitative Biology.

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